1776
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

A Pastoral inscribed to Miss Turner, of Stoulton, near Worcester.

Westminster Magazine 4 (November 1776) 617.

C. W.


A pastoral ballad in eight anapestic quatrains signed "C. W., Worcester, October 14, 1776." The poem develops a seasonal theme: "In vain might the summer depart, | In vain might the winter appear, | If his Charmer refuse not her heart | Say! what has a lover to fear?" Though the Westminster Magazine is dated "November," the poem may have made its first appearance in the St. James's Chronicle (10 December 1776).



Ye Shepherds who make the cool grove
With your pipe's rural music resound,
Be dumb whilst I sing of my love
To the woodlands and vallies around.

Still — still you intrude your fond lays,
Then let me reveal her dear name;
'Tis Eliza her Shepherd would praise,
Sure that your attention may claim!

Not all the sweet blossoms of Spring,
Nor Summer's more gorgeous attire,
Not all that ripe Autumn can bring,
Can paint the dear Girl I admire.

For soon shall rough Winter appear,
And the groves and the vallies lie waste,
While every gay child of the year
Shall perish before the cold blast.

But tho' the rude winter of age
O'er the cheeks of my love may prevail,
Her soul must for ever engage,
Her sweetness for [ever?] avail.

With a form which the Graces might wear,
Are the Loves and the Virtues combin'd;
There is witchcraft, 'tis true, in her air,
But 'tis weak to the charms of her mind.

How gayly the moments would glide,
Tho' a cottage were all my domain,
If Eliza would sit by my side,
If Eliza would smile on her swain!

In vain might the summer depart,
In vain might the winter appear,
If his Charmer refuse not her heart
Say! what has a lover to fear?

[p. 617]